Department of Justice orders completion of acquisition

WASHINGTON — The Department of Justice will require AMC Entertainment to divest eight theaters totaling some 117 screens in Chicago, Denver and Indianapolis to complete its $275 million acquisition of Kerasotes Showplace Theaters, the nation’s sixth largest circuit.

The DOJ said AMC’s original transaction proposed in January would lessen competition in firstrun theaters in those cities. It filed suit in U.S. District Court in Washington to block the deal, a move that was joined by the three states.

It said that under the terms of the proposed settlement, AMC must divest the following movie theaters: AMC Gardens 13 and Kerasotes Glen 10 (north suburban Chicago); AMC Cantera 30 (upper southwest suburban Chicago); Kerasotes Showplace 12 Bolingbrook (lower southwest suburban Chicago); Kerasotes Colony Square 12 (upper northwest Denver); Kerasotes Olde Town 14 (lower northwest Denver); AMC Castleton Square 14 or Kerasotes Showplace 12 Glendale Town (north Indianapolis); and AMC Greenwood 14 (south Indianapolis).

AMC will also be required to inform the Department’s Antitrust Division in advance of any future acquisitions in those markets.

The 101-year-old Kerasotes, based in Chicago, is owned by the Kerasotes family and Providence Equity Partners. The company said in January it would retain ownership of its two new Icon concept theaters in Minneapolis and Chicago, as well as a Showplace theater in Secaucus, N.J.

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